clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Predicting the match order at WWE Elimination Chamber 2017

It's one thing to predict the winners and losers at WWE's Elimination Chamber 2017, but how about taking a guess at the match order on that card?

WWE has announced 7 different matches for the main card of Elimination Chamber 2017.

Here is my subjective view of how important each of these 7 segments rank on the Elimination Chamber 2017 card, ordered from most important to least important.

  1. Elimination Chamber match
  2. Randy Orton vs. Luke Harper
  3. Alexa Bliss vs. Naomi
  4. Nikki Bella vs. Natalya
  5. Becky Lynch vs. Mickie James
  6. Tag Team Turmoil
  7. Crews & Kalisto vs. Dolph Ziggler

It is important to come up with a list like this to get an idea of which matches are going to be placed in the key spots on the card or take up the most time, and which matches might end up in the cool-down spots or be given the least amount of time.

The chamber match is the clear main event of this card, and no other match is even close to touching it in that regard.

It’s a pretty close call for the next several matches, but I’m giving Orton and Harper the edge due to Orton’s semi-regular main event status and their recent interactions with John Cena. I expect Orton’s match to receive more time than any other undercard match on this event.

Alexa and Naomi are next due to the championship being on the line, and Nikki goes after that due to her star power and the heated brawls she’s been having with Natalya. I can squint and see a scenario where Becky’s match is dropped to the pre-show, but I can’t really see that happening with the other two women’s matches.

It’s possible that I am selling Ziggler short by putting him underneath the forgotten tag team division. The entire tag division feels like a complete afterthought, but I can’t really see Ziggler’s match getting more time than tag team turmoil.

General structure

The main event match is obviously the chamber match, and the other chief feature of this card is that it includes 3 women’s matches. WWE doesn’t seem to ever place women’s matches in consecutive segments on the main card of a pay-per-view (PPV), so I am going to try to stick to that general rule of thumb when filling out this card.

This is a 7-segment card, and in general Segments 4 and 5 tend to be the longest segments on the undercard, while Segments 2 and 6 tend to be the shortest. This is far from set in stone, but it is a soft guideline that could affect my decision-making when I’m just grasping at straws.

Opening match

The opening match is usually one of the mid-level attractions with good work rate that doesn’t require a dedicated video package ahead of time to hype it up.

There are 3 women’s matches that must be placed across the first six segments, and none can be placed adjacent to each other. That makes it seem like there’s a decent chance that one of those matches will open the card.

Alexa’s match probably won’t feature good work rate, and it would seem bizarre to open with the women’s championship and then have two theoretically less important women’s matches follow it later in the night. That’s why I’m ruling it out for the opener.

Nikki’s match seems like it has good potential for one of those dedicated video packages that’s not suitable for the opening match.

Becky’s match is about as good as it gets for work rate on the undercard of this show.

The tag turmoil match has an outside shot at opening the card, especially if WWE has a surprise team ready to show up. But there is too much downside here with so many jobber teams and no guarantee of an unannounced team joining the fold, so it’s hard for me to favor this one.

Ultimately it seems that Becky and Mickie check off the most boxes when it comes to finding the typical PPV opening match. And this means Segment 2 won’t be a women’s match.

That gives me the following card:

Segment 1: Becky Lynch vs. Mickie James
Segment 2: (not Nikki or Alexa)
Segment 3:
Segment 4:
Segment 5:
Segment 6:
Segment 7: Elimination Chamber match

Everything else

Segments 2 and 6 are usually the shortest segments of the night, although sometimes WWE does close their PPVs with two important matches.

Alexa and Naomi stand out to me as a great fit for Segment 6 on this card, because not only is it one of the more important matches of the night, but it is also probably going to be kept relatively short due to the limitations of both performers in the ring. This also achieves a minor goal of spacing out the women’s matches as much as possible.

That means Segment 2 is most suitable for the least important match of the night, which would be Ziggler or Tag Turmoil.

Tag Turmoil is somewhat of an afterthought, but it is really hard to speed through a match that must have at least 5 separate falls. I do think WWE can still rush through it in like 10 minutes or so, but I’d be pretty surprised if Ziggler’s match even goes that long due to the stipulation. I’m not sure that it really makes sense to drag out a handicapped match where the heel is the one with the disadvantage. Therefore I’m throwing Ziggler into Segment 2.

That gives me the following card:

Segment 1: Becky Lynch vs. Mickie James
Segment 2: Crews & Kalisto vs. Dolph Ziggler
Segment 3:
Segment 4:
Segment 5: (not Nikki)
Segment 6: Alexa Bliss vs. Naomi
Segment 7: Elimination Chamber match

I’m looking at Orton’s match as the anchor of the undercard, and expect it to land in Segment 4 or 5 due to the tendency for those segments to run a little longer than Segment 3.

I’m also ruling out Nikki for Segment 5 because I can’t put her in an adjacent segment to Naomi. That means Segment 5 goes to either Orton or Tag Turmoil. Ultimately I think WWE should place a key match for the night in Segment 5, and so the Tag Turmoil match is not a good fit for that role. Therefore Orton and Harper get that spot.

After that it is pretty tough to choose between Nikki or Tag Turmoil for Segments 3 and 4. I’ll just fall back on the idea that Segment 4 is a little more important than Segment 3, and so that means Nikki gets Segment 4.

Finalized card

So here is my final prediction for the match order at Elimination Chamber 2017, along with guesses on the bell-to-bell match times.

Segment 1: Becky Lynch vs. Mickie James (12 minutes)
Segment 2: Crews & Kalisto vs. Dolph Ziggler (5)
Segment 3: Tag Team Turmoil (11)
Segment 4: Nikki Bella vs. Natalya (9)
Segment 5: Randy Orton vs. Luke Harper (14)
Segment 6: Alexa Bliss vs. Naomi (8)
Segment 7: Elimination Chamber match (35 minutes)

That's my prediction for the match order at Elimination Chamber 2017. What's yours?

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Cageside Seats Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your pro wrestling news from Cageside Seats